University of California

"Moving forward"

Submitted: Mar 18, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 We've been stunned by the drought and responses to it locally and at a state and national level. Environmentalists have been warning about how farmers have been over-drafting the aquifer in the Central Valley for decades and have been snubbed and demonized for mentioning it, as if we were not citizens and members of the same society that landowners and urban businessmen are. They don't even have to bribe elected officials anymore; social elites spring up overnight around wealth in new industries, whose "leaders" get what they want and they always want more water. Elected officials and educators -- from kindergarten to UC Merced -- babble on constantly about leadership. And they all use that one phrase, growing more absurd by the day: "We've got to move forward."

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Drought dementia 2

Submitted: Jan 30, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 

The drought has revealed that all the government and hydrological science available is not going to put California water policy back together again. It is like submitting Humpty Dumpty to exhaustive scientific studies of the tensile strength of egg shells and the heights of walls. As long as the king and his men keep growing, it will just get worse.

The total effect of groundwater regulation and associated increased expenses is going to be to put Valley agriculture 100-percent in the pockets of irrigation and water districts and federal and state agencies with jurisdiction over surface waters. The template has been in place for decades, but this will cause even more concentration of land ownership in the hands even fewer, richer growers. This neo-feudal system of agribusiness is so overwhelming that no new ideas or leadership can be generated from within it. Perhaps the bill by the two congressmen from north of the Bay Area at least won't add to the destruction. -- blj

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Solar patches

Submitted: Jan 29, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

  

 

We join the writer of a letter recently published in the Merced Sun-Star in welcoming a genuine "Fortune 250" energy corporation, NGR, to Merced County.  We couldn't imagine anything as exciting short of news that Occidental Petroleum was opening a local office to manage it fracking wells. We are particularly joyful  to see that this authentic renewable energy corporation calls its plantations of solar panels "gardens" instead of the clunckier "parks." used by a German-based transnational solar corporation to describe its plan to put 1,400 acres under  glass on the west side.

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Drought dementia

Submitted: Jan 27, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 

Agriculture is of great economic value in Merced County. With average age of 29, six years younger than the state average, there just aren't many people in the county who remember when there was a large population of small farmers, less than half the total population of today, and harvesting was a community event with help from migrants. Today, farmers are few, the only survivors were the beloved of their bankers, and farm labor was criminalized in the mid-Sixties.

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Merced Development Rodeo: Ol' Hoss calls out the Mayor

Submitted: Jan 08, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

Greg Hostetler remarks to Merced Mayor Stan Thurston

Oral Communications 

Merced City Council Meeting

January 5, 2015

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GZU8RDMQd7E

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Moyers' last interview: in the Public Trust Doctrine

Submitted: Jan 08, 2015
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 

 

 It was typical of Bill Moyers, the guy who always got it, to end his magnificent career of public broadcasting with an interview on the environment, specifically how the great American environmental law, once the envy of the world's environmentalists, has been largely corrupted -- Badlands has done some documentation on that topic -- and that the whole environmental legal edifice needs to be regrounded in  Public Trust Doctrine. Moyer's guest, Mary Christina Wood, a legal scholar from the University of Oregon, has published a book on the topic, Nature's Trust: Environmental Law for a New Ecological Age, Cambridge University Press, 2013. -- blj

1-2-15

 

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It's Yoo, don't UC?

Submitted: Dec 14, 2014
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 

With the release last week of the heavily redacted 500-page executive summary of the US Senate Study of the Central Intelligence Agency's Detention and Interrogation, the name John Yoo has surfaced again. Yoo, as you remember, was one of two assistant US attorneys general who drafted the infamous "torture memos," (1)which legally justified the use of "enhanced interrogation" techniques employed against al Qaeda, Taliban, Pashtuns, and assorted Iraqis and others captured in the maniacal US "war on terror" still raging on.

Yoo's narrow view of what constitutes torture is inversely proportional to his view of the powers of the president. (2)

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The two voices of California agriculture: Bragging and Whining

Submitted: Dec 10, 2014
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

Although these "articles" appear in mainstreem media outlets. their true audience is state and federal politicians, agencies and, in general, any public source of funding and any regulator who can be bought, rented or silenced. With the passage of state legislation to begin the process of regulation of groundwater, California agribusiness flakmeisters will be concocting tales of wonder and tales of woe about agricultural forever, as usual, when some public concern slightly impedes the forward march of their commodities' careers in the market. -- blj

 

 

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